HAMTRAMCK, Mich. (AP) — Residents of a Detroit-area community with a large Muslim population can sacrifice animals at home for religious reasons.
The Hamtramck City Council explicitly approved the practice, 3-2, Tuesday, another step in recognizing a cultural shift in a city whose 20th century history was shaped by Polish immigrants.
Muslims often slaughter animals, typically goats or sheep, or pay someone to do it for them during the holy holiday of Eid al-Adha. Meat is shared with family, friends and the poor.
The Hamtramck council in December had voted to continue a ban on animal slaughter but reversed course, at least for religious reasons, after legal advice and objections from people who follow the Islamic faith, the Detroit Free Press reported.
“If somebody wants to do it, they have a right to do their practice,” council member Mohammed Hassan said.
Dawud Walid, director of the Michigan branch of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, said “it’s not something new or novel.”
“This is when Muslims recognize Abraham sacrificing a sheep instead of having to sacrifice his son,” Walid said, referring to the passage in the Quran and Old Testament.
Hamtramck residents will be required to notify the city, pay a fee and make their property available for inspection.
Hamtramck has a population 28,000. More than half of the residents are of Yemeni or Bangladeshi descent, the Free Press said.